What are your qualifications?
I am a DONA Certified Birth Doula, Certified Lactation Counselor, VBACLink Certified Doula, and International Association of Birth Photographers member. I have been doing birth work sine 2017 and am slowly creeping up on 100 births attended. I am also a postpartum support group leader and educator.
I'm comfortable with birth, I understand the situations that can arise and I have spent years developing collaborative and friendly relationships with providers and nurses at local hospitals and in the home birth community.
Do you have to share my images?
Absolutely not. While the birth of your child is likely to be one of the best days of your life, it is not my story to tell unless you have given me permission to do so. Often once my clients receive their images, they will let me know which ones they are comfortable with me sharing, if any.
What if something goes wrong?
Documentary photography can be tricky here - my philosophy is to capture everything, and then let you decide postpartum what you'd like to see or not see. I will often separate your gallery into sections if a complication occurs so that you can view the images in your own time.
That being said, I always tell my clients: If you tell me to stop, I will stop. If you tell me to turn off my flash, I will. I will do my best to get you your images while preserving your autonomy and control of the atmosphere in which you give birth.
Can you be my doula and my birth photographer?
My doula clients receive 50% off their birth photography fee. Doula work is one of those things that just lives in me. I enjoy balancing physical and emotional support with creative imagery, and I feel like the role of a doula allows for different perspectives when doing photos. When I do both, I am the doula first. I step away to document as I am able and always arrange for others to step in during delivery and immediate postpartum so that I can get those images.
Being "just" the photographer is possible but I would highly encourage you to seek doula services from someone else.
The benefit of hiring a separate doula is that you will not have any lapses in documentation, and even emergency situations are captured since you have additional support.